ARTIST: PERRY FARRELL
TITLE: KIND HEAVEN
Perry Farrell is certainly a bit of a character and personality within the music scene. Known mostly as the frontman of Jane’s Addiction, Farrell is also the founder of Lollapalooza and a great musical visionary. It’s this vision that has spearheaded the first album he’s released in over a decade – ‘Kind Heaven’. But to Farrell, it’s more than just an album, it’s a musical collective, which will culminate in the opening of a Las Vegas complex of the same name in 2020. Farrell wants the complex to be home to the Kind Heaven Orchestra, a collective of musicians and artisans.
“Idon’t see this project as a solo album. I view the recording as the music of Kind Heaven, where eventually we’ll be entertaining you three dimensionally, across all senses,” he says. “We’ll present a new music listening experience and an immersive production that brings to life the story of an evolving world, and helps to build a global community.” It’s certainly an incredible vision and one that admittedly sounds rather difficult to pull off but you have to admire Farrell’s enthusiasm, and his passion for the project certainly bleeds through the songs on the record.
“his passion for the project certainly bleeds through the songs on the record”
Opening up with the bouncy 70s style ‘(red, white, and blue) Cheerfulness’ which sounds like it could be one of those unreleased Bowie cuts, it’s clear from the offset that we’re in for some serious nostalgia. Or perhaps that’s just what Farrell wants you to think. Second track ‘Pirate Punk Politician’ sounds a little more modern with some electronic samples and The 1975-esque vibes crossed with early 90s indie acid Brit-pop. Songs like ‘Spend The Body’ are pure chart worthy pop tunes, whereas tracks like ‘Machine Girl’ have that old school 80s vibe again. The latter is one of the catchiest and most fun tracks on the album, with some great vocals by Farrell’s wife Etty.
Final track ‘Let’s All Pray For This World’ contains a beautiful sentiment and some lovely lyrics which are occasionally lost in the mix and buried in over-production but it’s a fitting end to the album for the ever hopeful Farrell. A little bit of positivity is what we all need in the world right now.
“takes the listener on a musical journey”
It’s safe to say the album offers an unusual and eclectic collection of songs. Perhaps that’s due in part to the vast number of guest artists from different echelons of the music industry, featuring contributions from Dhani Harrison, Elliot Easton (The Cars), Taylor Hawkins (Foo Fighters) among others and co-produced by Farrell and Bowie collaborator Tony Visconti.
‘Kind Heaven’ certainly takes the listener on a musical journey, but doesn’t entirely sound cohesive at times, with some airy swirling pop landscapes losing some of their impact in the production and delivery falling flat. It’s also a relatively short and inoffensive collection, and it would be nice to see him get his teeth stuck into something longer and a bit meatier next time. Despite that, Farrell’s vision and legacy remains in tact. This is certainly an album of delightful songs which hold promise for the future and with everything else he’s got planned, his solo journey will be an interesting one to follow from here on in.